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When sports owners attack

Feb 2, 2011, 9:38 AM EDT

Dan Snyder

This isn’t about baseball but it’s fun anyway.  One day I hope to anger a baseball owner this much. Sadly, however, I don’t think there are any baseball owners as crazy, awful and mean as Dan Snyder is:

There’s no question Redskins owner Dan Snyder had a few problems with a cover story about him in Washington’s City Paper in November.

At the moment, in fact, Snyder is fighting mad.

Snyder has objected to the article that detailed some of his controversial actions as team owner and other reports about him in the weekly publication, and has threatened legal action against the newspaper. He also is seeking the dismissal of the article’s author, staff writer Dave McKenna.

Gotta love it when a billionaire goes after the head of an alt-weekly writer. Priorities, you know.

I think the more interesting part of this is that Snyder’s lawyers contacted the Washington Post and asked the Post to save emails between McKenna and the Post’s blogger Dan Steinberg.  Those two are friends, it seems.  The Post describes the move thusly:

The attorneys said they intend to explore whether there was any agreement between McKenna and Steinberg to cross-promote McKenna’s pieces on Snyder. Steinberg routinely links to sports content across the Web.

Um, whatever. I have a lot of friends in the media and greater blogosphere. Here’s how that works: “Hey Craig! If you’re interested I wrote a post about [subject] that you might like.  Hope all is well, Sincerely, Writer.”  It’s nice to get the heads up about such things.  Who knew that emails like that are “agreements to cross-promote” that are subject to pre-litigation discovery hold orders?

Whatever the case, even if McKenna’s piece was defamatory — and a quick reading of it doesn’t reveal anything that sticks out as such —  it strikes me that there are better ways to handle it than to sic your lawyers on newspapers in such a hamfisted way.  How about this: a nice email explaining the problems you have with the article. If nothing is done after that, file suit.  If you don’t have the stones — or the facts — to file suit, let it lie, lest you make yourself out to be a bigger ass than the original article made you out to be in the first place.

Of course, that would be sensible, and this is Dan Snyder we’re talking about here.

  1. BC - Feb 2, 2011 at 9:44 AM

    I’d sum it up as follows: There are more psychotic, power-drunk owners in football, and more incompetent owners in baseball.

    • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Feb 2, 2011 at 9:53 AM

      Can’t anyone set my Raiders free?

      God, it’s me, SabathiaWouldBeGoodAtTheEighthToo! Are you listening? Set my Raiders free!!

      • BC - Feb 2, 2011 at 10:43 AM

        I’ll set your Raiders free if you set my Mets free.

  2. churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Feb 2, 2011 at 10:24 AM

    Good god and I thought Steinbrenner was bad.

  3. Jonny 5 - Feb 2, 2011 at 11:11 AM

    I feel for the guy. I’d be going all nutty if I traded for Donavan Mcnabb too….

  4. mrfloydpink - Feb 2, 2011 at 11:25 AM

    Ah, yes. Mr. Calcaterra’s daily jab at football/football fans/football owners.

    • Craig Calcaterra - Feb 2, 2011 at 11:38 AM

      You think I wouldn’t take this “jab” at Snyder if he was a baseball owner? Hell, I’d probably devote a day of posts to it.

      • BC - Feb 2, 2011 at 1:08 PM

        There are no Daniel Snyders, Jerry Joneses or Al Davises in MLB now (with the passing of Mr. Steinbrenner anyway). As a counterpoint, I think it would be GREAT to get a Mark Cuban into MLB. Stir things up. Tell Bud Light to shove it once in a while. As long as he doesn’t buy the Braves (sorry Craig).

      • mrfloydpink - Feb 2, 2011 at 1:40 PM

        You’re right, you would. Point well taken.

  5. schmedley69 - Feb 2, 2011 at 11:32 AM

    I live in between D.C. and Baltimore and have followed Snyder’s exploits for years. He truly seems like a bad, bad guy. I actually feel sorry for my friends who are Redskins fans, and that should never happen, because I’m an Eagles fan. Snyder makes Peter Angelos look like a good guy in comparison.

    Snyder also owns Six Flags, and with his penchant for cost cutting, there’s no way I will enter any of those parks again and put my life in that weasel’s hands.

  6. apbaguy - Feb 2, 2011 at 12:15 PM

    I’m glad-for many reasons-that I moved from DC to SF 7 years ago. Dan Snyder was way down the list of those reasons (Angelos was actually higher on the list, but still far below “traffic” and “climate”). But really, Snyder is just part of that “rich guys do what they want” attitude that is pervasive currently, from his cutting down trees on US parkland to improve his view of the Potomac, to this episode. The word “no” is simply never uttered in his presence. I went to one Redskins game in Landover and could not believe the lousy sightlines, insanely bad traffic and parking, and terrible concessions. I’ll bet he’s all for the lockout.

  7. Walk - Feb 2, 2011 at 12:21 PM

    What kind of billionaire is this guy? Normally they dont seem to object in this fashion. Usually they just buy a business and can the offender during downsizing. Of course that might have been the plot to law and order rerun i watched a while back..

  8. Panda Claus - Feb 2, 2011 at 1:03 PM

    Being both an O’s fan and a Redskins’ fan, I get Peter Angelos AND Dan Snyder as my team owners. In horse racing that’s called an exacta.

  9. frankvzappa - Feb 2, 2011 at 2:28 PM

    one of his Redskins players (i forget who and dont feel like searching through PFT articles right now) said that he is “not like us”…i believe he said Snyder had a “black heart”…these quotes and Snyders actions here are unsurprising, considering the dark occult rituals that billionaires, politicians, bankers, and other world controllers participate in at places like Bohemian Grove, etc…its a fact…it was a rare admittance through the mainstream media that the people running the world are EVIL to the core…that explains the controlled economic destruction of America in order to submit them to the global wage slave state…instead of trying to figure out a way to thumbs down this post, do some research instead…

    • Panda Claus - Feb 2, 2011 at 3:29 PM

      John Riggins, HOF ex-player for the Skins before Snyder became owner, said Snyder had a “dark heart”. That was within the past couple of years he said that.

      Now the fact that Riggins used to work for Snyder’s radio station and was let go from his show when Snyder bought another station and merged the two stations probably had something to do with Riggins’ bitterness. Just a hunch.

  10. Dan in Katonah - Feb 2, 2011 at 2:28 PM

    Stastical fact: 87% of people who do the whole “double-pointing” thing are douche-bags.

    • schmedley69 - Feb 2, 2011 at 7:59 PM

      Good point. Although I think Isaac the Bartender from The Love Boat should be put in the non-douchebag percentile:

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